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Thailand Community Hall Of Fame

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May Kaidee, Bangkok Thailand. Winner Against the Odds: MayHI was forced to leave her home in the village of Si Sa Saket at the age of 16 to help run her aunt and uncle’s vegetarian restaurant in Bangkok. May has been a pioneer for vegetarian food in Bangkok, leading cooking classes, running three restaurants and all this as a single mother. May’s strength and can-do attitude are a real inspiration, especially in Thailand, where it is unusual for a woman to act independently on her own initiative.  One such story is about Mai Kadee, who came to live in Bangkok from one of the poorest parts of Thailand and strated her own vegetarian restaurant. After years of struggle (raising a child as a single mother, dealing with local prejudice and so on), she has risen to become one of the area’s most sucessful businesswomen, running three restaurants, cookery classes and a number of other ventures. By Kirsty Turner

Soon, Bangkok, Thailand, Winner Against the Odds: Soon was able to escape a life of oppression under the evil Burmese Junta. At the age of only 18 years old he traveled as an illegal immigrant to neighboring Thailand. There, demonstrating an inspiring optimism, he educated himself, found work and managed to support the family he had to leave behind. By Stratford Blyth